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Mental Health & Addictions Service



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Fees and Charges Categorisation



Computer Program for Young People with Mild to Moderate Depression

Programme Areas

Self help/ helpline, Mental health

Programme Type

Online / e-mental health


All of New Zealand

Age Groups

Youth / Rangatahi

Referral Types

Self referral

Referral Process

You do not need a referral - just go to and sign up.


If you or your teenager has depression, anxiety, stress or worries they can learn skills for dealing with depression and anxiety online, for free, with no appointment or referral needed using SPARX.

SPARX is a computer programme; it uses characters and a fantasy world to teach skills for dealing with depression and anxiety in real life. SPARX was developed at the University of Auckland. It has been tested and shown to work well and now it is funded by the Ministry of Health.

SPARX is aimed at teenagers, but parents and others can use it too.

Using SPARX:

  • Free
  • No-one else needs to know
  • Your info is private
  • You can use SPARX as well as seeing a health provider or getting other kinds of help
  • SPARX will suggest other ways to get help if you need it.  

Young people who used SPARX have felt less depressed, less anxious and said that SPARX has helped them to get on with others, feel positive and find the words to talk to adults about what is going on.

Trying out the first level will take about 20 minutes and will give you a good idea whether it is for you.

If you want to know more about evidence for SPARX, info for families or young people, check out the SPARX website for info and videos.

Contact Details

SPARX is an online computer program

Contact us if you have a SPARX technical/IT question here

This page was last updated at 7:48AM on May 12, 2022. This information is reviewed and edited by SPARX.